Toa makes top four in tennis

Wednesday December 20, 2017 Written by Published in Other Sports
Cook Islands tennis coach Malcolm Kajer (middle) with national junior squad members Teakaiti Toa, Arikitoa Allsworth, Paulo Allsworth and Christopher Neururer. 17121916 Cook Islands tennis coach Malcolm Kajer (middle) with national junior squad members Teakaiti Toa, Arikitoa Allsworth, Paulo Allsworth and Christopher Neururer. 17121916

Four Rarotonga-based tennis players are representing the country at the Auckland Xmas Junior Tennis Tournament in New Zealand.

 

Teakaiti Toa, Arikitoa Allsworth, Paulo Allsworth and Christopher Neururer are flying the Cook Islands flag in the tournament for 12 and under age group, which started on Sunday (CI time).

On day one competition, Arikitoa went down in a tough three set match which took three hours to complete, to Thomas David 6/4 2/6 2/6.

Paulo went down too in his opening match against stronger opponent Kareem Samy 0/6 0/6, and Neururer lost to Fraser McLaren 1/6 0/6.

Despite the losses, team coach Malcolm Kajer said both boys played “very well” against top seeded opponents in their debut year.

In her opening match of the tournament, the impressive Toa put in a very strong performance, overpowering Leah Patuwairua from the Jellicoe Club and winning 6/1 6/3.

In round two, she faced number two-ranked Maria Galatescu from Wellington and she created an upset, winning that clash 6/3 6/7 6/4.

“With two tight games, she managed to find her form, winning the final set 6/4.”

In the boys’ doubles, Neururer and his Danish partner Valdemar Soldbro went down to number two seeds Chan Min and Dawson Lage 0/6 1/6.

Arikitoa and brother Paulo won their debut doubles match against Finn Harrison and Silvin Muresan 6/3 6/4.

Toa and her Samoan partner Rosie Tupuola beat Charmara and Karina Tatari 6/1 6/4 in the other doubles match.

Arikitoa overcame the hangover of day one play to make a good start on day two, finding his true form by beating Luke Hegley 6/3 6/2.

However, Neururer was unable to do the same, losing a close match against Finn Harrison 3/6 7/5 and 5/10 in the super tiebreaker.

Paulo was unable to find his winning touch, going down to Kahilli Vanfau despite being ahead in the second set 7/5 3/6 and 2/10 in the super tiebreaker.

In the girls’ doubles, Toa and her partner created the upset of the day when they beat the number one seeded pairs of Olivia Brown and Mardanus Mischa 6/1 6/4.

“Teakaiti’s volley and smash skills was the deciding factor in the match. The pair will now be in the semifinals,” Kajer said.

In the 12U singles quarters, Toa again overpowered her opponent Rose Loutit 6/3 6/0 to book a date in the semi-finals against the fourth seeded Aishi Das.

“We should be all proud of Teakaiti and her effort reaching the top four playoffs,” Kajer said.

“Arikitoa with his form on Monday was on track to move up the rankings yesterday. He is likely to make the consolation quarterfinals.

“We all look forward to more positive results as the week passes on. The team is in high spirits. The support from the parents who are here with the team and the relatives based in Auckland is tremendous.”

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